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Hearing Implant Team

The Hearing Implant team consists of a group of professionals working closely together and maintaining close links with centres nationally and internationally.

We are committed to ensuring that patients receive the most appropriate guidance, training, treatment and equipment to optimise their auditory potential.

Surgeons

Mr Philip J Robinson                          
Director of West of England Hearing Implant Programme and consultant adult and paediatric ENT surgeon at Bristol Royal Infirmary, University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust and Bristol Royal Hospital for Children.

I work as an adult and paediatric ENT surgeon in Bristol specialising in ear and nose problems with a particular interest in hearing loss. I established the West of England Cochlear Implant Programme with Dawn Webster in 1995 at Southmead Hospital, Bristol.

I have been involved with Cochlear Implants since 1986, when the Royal Ear Hospital was the only cochlear implant centre in the UK. I now lead the West of England Hearing Implant Programme and carry out 40-50 Implant operations per year.

Mr Daniel Hajioff - consultant ENT surgeon
I have been a consultant ENT surgeon since 2006. I trained in London and Toronto and have operate on adults and children.

Mr Stephen Broomfield - consultant ENT surgeon

Programme co-ordinators

Julia Hood - adult hearing implant co-ordinators

Jenny Maddocks - principal audiological scientist

As the co-ordinator for the Paediatric Cochlear Implant Programme since 1998/9, I strive to ensure the patient's pathway from referral to implantation is as smooth as possible. I will always try to help with any query big or small and am happy to be contacted. My clinical work, as an audiological scientist involved in the cochlear implant initial activation and subsequent tuning sessions allows me the privilege of following children's progress in their hearing from prior to implantation until they are transferred to the adult/adolescent team.

Audiology

Paediatric Team

Elizabeth Midgley - consultant audiological scientist

I work as an audiological scientist within the Paediatric Hearing Implant Team. I am head of the Paediatric Audiology Team based at Bristol Royal Hospital for Children and team leader for our newborn hearing screening programme. This ensures close liaison between all the health service teams responsible for diagnosing and treating deaf and hearing impaired children.

Dawn O'Dwyer - principal audiological scientist

I have worked as an audiological scientist since 1994 and most of that time have specialised in paediatric cochlear implants, initially with the Nottingham Hearing Implant team. I've been part of the West of England Hearing Implant Team since 2001.

Sally Jones - senior audiologist, paediatric team

I have worked in Bristol as a paediatric audiologist for over 15 years and have always been involved with the rehabilitation of children with hearing impairment. I joined the Hearing Implant team from 2010.

Janine Matthews - principal audiologist paediatric team
My role entails performing hearing assessments on infants and children prior to having an implant and, following surgery, programming the sound processor to the child's individual needs. I have been working in children's audiology since 2005 and involved in the HI programme since 2008. I thoroughly enjoy working with the families and playing a part in their child's journey.

Adult Team

Julia Hood - chief audiologist/hearing therapist

I have been working as an audiologist since 1980 and specialising in the field of cochlear implants since 1998. I qualified additionally as a hearing therapist at Bristol University in 2000. I work with adults and adolescents from referral for assessment through to initial 'switch on' of the speech processor, subsequent programming and rehabilitation.

Beth Savage  - clinical scientist (audiology)

Following graduation in 2010 I worked as an Audiologist in Bristol giving me a good background knowledge of NHS hearing aids. In 2015 I joined the WEHIP team. Since then I have completed further training to complete my Master's degree and to become a Clinical Scientist. Currently, I am involved with cochlear implants, middle ear implants and bone-anchored hearing devices assessing and assisting patients through their whole implant journey. This means I see patients for initial assessment, multi-disciplinary clinics, device choice 'switch on', follow up (reports) and repairs. I thoroughly enjoy developing a rapport with all our patients and supporting them through the ups and downs of an implant journey.

Elisa Romeo - clinical scientist (audiology)

I have been working in audiology since 2010 and joined the WEHIP adult team in September 2015.
My role involves the assessment, 'switch-on' and follow up care for patients receiving either bone-anchored, middle ear or cochlear implants.

Natasha Phillips - audiologist

I qualified as an audiologist from the University of Bristol in 2011 and have worked with both adults and children. I joined the West of England Hearing Implant Programme in 2017 and will be working with adults.  I will be involved in assessments, cochlear implant 'switch on', the fitting of bone anchored hearing devices and follow up care.

Speech and Language Therapy

Sara Plowright - consultant speech and language therapist - paediatric rehab lead

I have been a speech and language therapist since 1993 and been working with deaf/hearing impaired people since 1995. Within WEHIP, I work with both children and adults and have a lead role with rehabilitation staff working with children.

Frances Grant - speech and language therapist               

I have been working as a speech and language therapist with children since 1981 and working with deaf children and their families since 1989. I worked as specialist therapist for deafness in Somerset for nearly 20 years and have worked in resource bases here in the UK and for a school for the deaf in New Zealand. I have been working with babies and young deaf children on the West of England Hearing Implant Programme since 2005.

Sheena MacDonald - speech and language therapist

I trained initially, in the early 1980's, as an Audiology Technician and have worked in several Audiology Departments across the country.  I began to re-train in 2001 as a Speech and Language Therapist, working firstly in Gloucestershire with deaf children and their families and have now been in the Paediatric team at WEHIP since May 2012.

Emily Greenwood - speech and language therapist

I have been working with babies and young deaf children and their families since 2012 as a specialist Speech and Language Therapist in Bath. I work within the community to support children at home, at nursery and at school, as well as providing specialist support in a primary resource base. I have recently joined the paediatric WEHIP team.

Teachers of the Deaf

Carol Wells - lead teacher of the Deaf Paediatric Team

I am qualified as a teacher, a teacher of the deaf and as a counsellor. I have worked with deaf children of all ages in the full range of educational settings. Since 1990 I have specialised in working with babies and pre-school deaf children and their families. I have worked for the West of England Hearing Implant Programme since 2002.

Mary McArdle - teacher of the deaf

I have enjoyed an extensive and varied career working with deaf children and their families. Following my training as a Teacher of the Deaf I worked firstly as a Primary School Teacher then as a Teacher of the Deaf in Primary  Resource Bases, followed by peripatetic advisory work to school age children and their families. Latterly I was Co-ordinator of a Hearing Support Centre in a mainstream Secondary School. I am thrilled to be joining the multidisciplinary  WEHIP Team supporting children and their families through their implant journey.

Jane Berry - teacher of the deaf

I qualified as a primary teacher before specialising and taking further training as a teacher of the deaf. I also completed a Masters Degree in Deaf Education. I have experience of working with deaf children of all ages in mainstream, hearing impaired resource bases, schools for deaf and as a peripatetic teacher. Recently I have specialised in working with early years children and their families. I have worked for the West of England Hearing Implant Programme since 2007.

Barbara Morgan - teacher of the deaf

I qualified as a Teacher of the Deaf back in 1988 and have had a rewarding career supporting a wide range of deaf children and their families in a variety of settings. Most recently I have specialised in working with families with deaf babies and young children including those with cochlear implants. I joined the Paediatric Team at WEHIP in 2018.

 

Clinical psychologist

Sangeeta Sawlani - specialist clinical psychologist paediatric team

I qualified as a clinical psychologist in 2009 and since then have worked with children, young people with long-term physical health conditions, and their families. I joined the West of England Hearing implant Programme in 2014. My role is to engage with children and families embarking on their Cochlear Implant journey and offer psychological support and advice to families and other professionals at any point in the care pathway.

Isobelle Biggin- specialist Clinical Psychologist adult team

I qualified as a clinical psychologist in 2015 and since this time have worked with adults, young people and children with a number of different health conditions. I joined the West of England Hearing Implant Programme in 2018 and offer support to adults who have been referred to the service for assessment and throughout their care pathway.  

Administrators

Vanessa Coles 

We are based at St Michael's Hospital and provide administrative support for the Adult Team and Paediatric Rehab Team.

Debra Blanchard

I am based at St Michael's Hospital. I am involved with all aspects of administration for the Paediatric Team.

Tina Williams

I am also based at St Michaels Hospital working alongside Debra Blanchard in the administration of the Paediatric Hearing Implant Programme.

Selina Chapman  - administration assistant

I joined the team in 2017 as an Administration assistant at St Michael's hospital.  I'm mainly based on the adult side supporting all the staff, but I also support the Paediatric Rehabilitation team with administrative tasks.

Eryn Morley - healthcare science support worker

I have been with the adult WEHIP team since September 2017. I assist the audiology team with the maintenance of our patients' cochlear implant and BAHA devices including issuing spare equipment and carrying out repairs. I also help out with administrative tasks on the front desk.